Multipurpose helicopter makes debut flight in Jiangxi

Updated: 2022- 05- 17

Photo shows the AC313A, a heavy-lift, multipurpose helicopter developed by Aviation Industry Corp of China, conducting its debut flight in East China's Jiangxi province on May 17, 2022. [Photo provided to China Daily]

The AC313A, a heavy-lift, multipurpose helicopter developed by Aviation Industry Corp of China, conducted its debut flight in Jiangxi province on Tuesday morning, according to AVIC.

The State-owned aircraft conglomerate said in a release that the test flight took place at the Lyumeng Airport — which is owned by the AVIC Changhe Aircraft Industry — in Jingdezhen and lasted about 22 minutes.

The helicopter will soon carry out more test flights and begin its airworthiness certification process, the company said.

Designed by the China Helicopter Research and Development Institute, the AC313A is 19.3 meters long and 4.4 meters wide, and it has a maximum takeoff weight of 13.8 metric tons.

Photo shows the AC313A, a heavy-lift, multipurpose helicopter developed by Aviation Industry Corp of China, conducting its debut flight in East China's Jiangxi province on May 17, 2022. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Operated by two pilots, the craft can transport up to 28 passengers. It is capable of fulfilling a wide variety of tasks, including personnel and cargo transport, fire extinguishing, disaster relief, medical aid and maritime patrol, according to AVIC.

Liu Wenqi, the AC313A's chief designer, said that compared with its predecessor, the AC313, the upgraded variant features better engines, rotor wings and transmission gears, and also has improved avionics, flight-control and hydraulic systems. Moreover, its cabin space is larger than that of the AC313, he added.

"Its deployment will put an end to the absence of a domestically developed, large civilian helicopter that can be used in plateau or low-temperature environments," Liu said.

The designer said the new helicopter will also strengthen the country's ability to respond to emergencies.

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